As I have been away in the country side for a week, I’ve had more time to enjoy the rest and take time out, to relax and spend some ‘quality’ time with my husband & son. We were invited by my son’s friend and his family to join them in celebrating their sons 18th birthday.
Now birthday celebrations are some what different at the moment as we all know during this pandemic. With social distancing measures in place we still had an enjoyable time.
Thinking about times of celebration, I have been reading through Matthew 22 about a king who throws a wedding banquet for his son. When it is ready, the guests are informed, but find other things to do. This enrages the king, who sends his army to destroy them and their city. Determined to fill every seat at the table, he sends his servants out to persuade others to attend.
Most guests have come in their best clothes, but one hasn’t bothered to change. Attendants tie him hand & foot & throw him out into the darkness, where there will be weeping & gnashing of teeth. This verse speaks to those who are Christians in name only. To those who are depending on their own works, their own self-righteousness, to make them acceptable before God. Just as the king provided the wedding garment for the guests, God provides salvation. To refuse the garment is insulting to the giver.
The parable has now become a warning to those who accept the invitation, come when called, but do nothing to make themselves presentable or worthy of the occasion.
Lately I have been challenged about my personal life experience with the Lord, in how ‘different’ I am. How much more like Jesus am I, in the way I treat others and how I live my life. What I say and don’t say for that matter. So I am very much reliant on the power of the Holy Spirit as I can only be connected to Jesus by His Spirit.
I find verse 8 disconcerting where it tells us that the wedding banquet is ready, but those invited did not deserve to come. As I have studied this parable, it has got me thinking about the last verse where it tells us that many were invited, but few were chosen. I have been mulling this over in my mind. How ready am I, I’ve accepted the invitation, am I ready for the banquet.
Or am I in this category? Many want to be justified, few want to be sanctified. Many want forgiveness, but few want holiness. Many want to attend the heavenly banquet, but few want to prepare themselves. I think those who really understand the invitation & it’s purpose will want to make every effort to grace the occasion.
Nothing is hidden from God. If you are maintaining a facade of righteousness, He knows. If you are trying to hold onto the world & maintain your salvation, it won’t work.
The invitation is for everyone, but not many will respond. I will leave you with one thought.
Have you responded yet?